About Me

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Summer night...

It's lovely outside.  I just took Yasir for a walk around the neighborhood.  There were some horse carriages passing through and he stopped when he heard the hoofbeats.  He is so alert in the evening, always looking around.  I spent the day in the suburbs to take class with one of my favorite teachers, even though I had worked the night before and just barely made it there.  I was lucky I made all my train/bus connections!

Class today reinforced what a Pilates/dance teacher at Joffrey Academy told me in class on Friday afternoon.  It is so important to understand how movements are executed in order to perform them effectively.  She talked about how children are corrected at an early age like this but, sadly, adult students don't always get this type of attention, or it doesn't sink in until injuries and aches and pains happen which make you think about how you are doing things, as with me.

The Pilates teacher corrected the placement of my hips, telling me to keep them down and to hold the sides and later she explained about the psoas and obliques to me after class.  In order to allow the arms and legs to move, space must be created in these areas.  They also wrap into the back and if something is not correct, you will feel a pain.  Also, she said in class how the large seat and thigh muscles always want to take over, the same thing Saturday's teacher said to another girl in class.

There are exercises to do to pinpoint the areas that should be working, namely, the backs of the legs and inner thighs.  In doing the standard clam, the movement of these muscles is felt at the top of the clam movement.  Also, it is effective to wrap a theraband around the thighs and try to move the thigh in and out, or bend and extend the leg into the floor while sitting down...

I told the Pilates teacher that the problem is in the turnout and there is no exercise except dancing that will develop this.  So, dance I must.  It is such a contrast to the gym in that I must feel more "feminine" and lighter in my movements.  More girly.  I looked at myself in the mirror and saw also how my feet were starting to sickle, even my good right foot!  The feet must turn out, too...

So I asked the teacher today how I can be stronger in demi-toe and how to keep my legs straighter and he said it is because I have weak calves in comparison to my thighs and when I am at the gym I should work on my calves.  So, once I got home and finally got to the gym, I went for a swim but since I was tired and the water was cold, I just did laps with the noodle, which is a good workout, too.

But, the point is, everyone is so concerned about having a workout and burning calories.  If you want to dance, I thought, it is the knitpicky things that must be done, as I said to the ballet teacher today.  So, I spent some time in the water doing calf lifts against the resistance of the water, as well as rehashing some of the steps we did today, like developpes, tombes with pas de bourre, noticing how my legs were moving underwater.  I saw how tight my upper hamstrings were as I did a "barre" stretch at the side of the pool and what was necessary to do a good releve, trying to keep my feet from sickling.  Hard work, but now I feel so much better...